They've got a really good football team. I don't keep up with a lot of the ACC schools, they've got their division and we've got ours, but you can't help living in North Carolina knowing about the kids they sign. They recruit nationwide. You keep reading about the players they sign. They are just outstanding players.
They had a really good football team last year. Coach Amato came here from Florida State, and he's got a good staff. It's going to be a big challenge for us.
What do you see as the biggest problem with NC State?
Typically every year we play at least one [game like this]. One of the big differences in I-AA and I-A is we have 63 scholarships and they've got 85. We have one really good tight end, and they probably have three. They go against that guy everyday in practice. We don't practice against the competition level that they do.
You can't make mistakes. You can't make mistakes and expect to beat that kind of football team. You've got to keep them to a minimum. That's the thing we talk about, we harp on with our players.
The kicking game, anytime you get in those kind of ballgames the kicking game is big.
How does this team compare to last year's?
I think it's just too early to compare this team to last year's team. That group played fifteen ballgames, and this one hasn't been on the field yet. It's way too soon.
We've worked awfully hard. We've got what can be a good nucleus.
Thoughts on quarterback situation:
Trey Elder will start for us at quarterback. He's played in a lot of big games if you go all the way back to his high school career at Byrnes High School in Duncan, South Carolina.
When Trey was a freshman, he started and played the entire game against Texas State. He started the championship game and played very well.
He's never gone into a season, since high school, where he's the guy. I think it's a little different for a quarterback to be a starter from the get-go rather than come off the bench. It's a little easier to come off the bench.
What are his greatest attributes?
I think our players have a lot of confidence in him. I think our players respect him, and I think that his leadership qualities are probably his biggest asset.
How does the change at quarterback affect the reflection of this team yet?
We don't know yet. He hasn't played anybody the caliber of these guys. We all know that. He hasn't been in control of a game of this magnitude. I don't want to take anything away from Northern Iowa, but playing Northern Iowa and Furman isn't like playing North Carolina State. We all know that, and they are good football teams. They are not the level of these guys.
I don't know. It's going to be hard to see. Trey's prepared well and he's going to run our football team. We're going to give him all the help we can give him.